Week 3 Case 2 - the Failure of Boo.Com

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Submitted By SherylsAngel
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Week 3 Case 2 - The Failure of Boo.com 1. Was Boo.com doomed by its faulty strategy or its poor implementation? Boo.com was doomed by both poor implementation and strategy. Strategy: ”Boo.com first announced that it would launch by the end of May 1999; however, due to software problems, the Web site actually launched in November 1999. The company failed to meet its sales targets by January of 2000” (Cullen J. &., 2008). By the co-founder Ernst Malmsten’s own admission “We have been too visionary” (Cullen J. &., 2008). Clothing is one of the hardest things to sell on the internet because people like to try clothes on, see and feel them personally. I don’t think they were realistic in regards to their competition. “The company also failed to consider those companies with strong brand names (Land’s End, Nordstrom) that had already established strong presences in the markets that they wished to attack. Many of these companies had a long history in these markets due to catalog and brick and mortar operations. Consequently, they had advantage in resources, as well as in brand name” (Cullen J. &., 2008). They launched globally rather than starting out in one market and then spreading out as resources allowed. Quite simply they spread their resources too thin. The primary challenges were:
Multiple Currencies – they muddled through this with a costly investment in technology. Multiple Languages – “to be accepted by markets in different countries, the content has to be in different languages”, “the language and product selection must be sensitive to the local cultures

in order to truly appeal. Boo.com may have underestimated the cost of achieving this on the Web” (Cullen J. &., 2008).  On-the-Fly Tax Calculation – Because they were operating in so many countries, they were being taxed multiple times on one transaction because servers were located in one location,…...

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